4.1 This chapter examines some of the key concerns with respect to mature age workers and insurance that emerged during the course of this Inquiry. These concerns include: the availability of, and information about, insurance products for mature age workers; age-based limitations and premiums for some insurance products; and the relevance, transparency and accessibility of the actuarial and statistical data upon which age-based insurance underwriting and pricing occurs.
4.2 The ALRC is of the view that the Insurance Reform Advisory Group (IRAG) is the most appropriate body to consider many of these matters in more detail. Accordingly, the ALRC proposes that IRAG examine mechanisms for reviewing age-based underwriting and pricing processes and ensuring reliance on relevant and appropriate actuarial and statistical data. The ALRC also suggests that IRAG consider options for the development of a central information source to provide clear information about available insurance products and discuss the design of comprehensive and affordable insurance products tailored to meet the needs of mature age persons. The ALRC also asks whether the General Insurance Code of Practice or similar industry standards or codes might usefully play a role in this area.
4.3 The second part of this chapter examines the operation of the insurance exemption under the Age Discrimination Act 2004 (Cth) (ADA). The ALRC asks whether, if retained in the course of the consolidation of Commonwealth anti-discrimination law, the exemption could be amended, for example, to limit its application. The ALRC also asks whether the powers of the Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) to request actuarial information from insurers are sufficient. The ALRC proposes that the AHRC and the insurance industry should develop guidance material about the application of any insurance exemption under the ADA or consolidated discrimination legislation.